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UPDATE: Lopez Lake fire burns 220 acres, 20 percent contained

Fire broke out Saturday afternoon
Posted: 8:04 AM, Sep 22, 2019
Updated: 2019-09-23 00:36:31-04
Lopez Lake fire burns 220 acres, 20 percent contained

(UPDATE 6:57 p.m.) - The fire is now 20% contained. SLO County Sheriff's Office tweeted out an update Sunday evening

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UPDATE (2:45 p.m.) - The Lopez Lake Fire is at approximately 220 acres and 10 percent containment, according to a tweet from CAL FIRE SLO.

The evacuation order is set to be lifted for the French Camp area and Upper Lopez Canyon Road at 11 a.m. Monday.

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The Lopez Fire in San Luis Obispo County has now burned 250 acres and is 10 percent contained, according to CAL FIRE SLO Sunday morning.

The Lopez Fire broke out Saturday afternoon around 2:30 p.m. and spread quickly.

On Sunday morning, CAL FIRE SLO Fire Chief Scott Jalbert said the fire is continuing to move northeast mainly into Federal Forestry land in very heavy brush and steep terrain on the northeast side of Lopez Lake near Camp French.

24 homes were evacuated on Saturday afternoon. Those evacuations remain in place on Sunday until firefighters can complete a fire line around their homes. No homes have burned as of Sunday morning.

This is the latest fire map released by CAL FIRE SLO Sunday morning.

Lopez Lake Fire map updated Sunday morning by CAL FIRE
Lopez Lake Fire map updated Sunday morning by CAL FIRE

Additional crews were brought in to assist those 110 firefighters already working in Unified Command on the Lopez Fire. Aircraft are resuming their attack on the fire as well.

One firefighter was treated and released with a minor injury while working on the Lopez Fire Saturday afternoon, according to CAL FIRE SLO.

Lopez Lake fire Sunday firefighter briefing. Photo courtesy Cal Fire SLO
Lopez Lake fire Sunday firefighter briefing. Photo courtesy Cal Fire SLO
Lopez Lake fire. View from above Saturday evening from CAL FIRE
Lopez Lake fire. View from above from CAL FIRE

On Saturday , CAL FIRE SLO Chief Scott Jalbert said there are several challenges to fighting the Lopez Fire including the steep and inaccessible terrain in some areas.

Chief Jalbert told KSBY News the fuels around the Lopez Fire are really dry and the offshore winds were driving the flames uphill. He said there are very few recent burn scars, as the area hasn't burned in about 60 years.

Lopez Lake fire. Photo courtesy Yerixa Montero
Lopez Lake area fire. Photo courtesy Yerixa Montero

Jalbert said fire retardant was laid around two-thirds of the fire but there is concern for the wind gusts growing and shifting Saturday night to the east/northeast as well as accessing the difficult terrain in the dark.

The cause of the fire remains under investigation.

Campers can see Lopez Fire from their campgrounds.